By Jamie Montgomery
Senior Manager, Transfer Credit Evaluation, American Public University
If you started a degree program at another school but didn’t finish all of the classes for your degree, you have the option of transferring your credit. However, you may be surprised to learn that traditional academic credit is only one of the credit types that could count towards your current degree program.
You may be closer to reaching your educational goals than you think if your past includes:
- Military training
- ALEKS, AP, CLEP, DSST or Excelsior examinations
- Public service experience
- Professional experience in a given field
- International degrees
- Any number of other measurable sources of college-level learning
In addition, some career experience or volunteer work can count toward college credit through our Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) program.
Transfer Credit Standards
With transfer credits, each university sets its own standards with regard to what type of transfer credit is acceptable. A general understanding of the university’s transfer credit policies will help you determine if your previous learning or experience might allow you to complete your degree more quickly and at a lower price point.
Another thing to keep in mind is a school’s residency requirement. This requirement has nothing to do with where you live. Rather, it is a determination of how much credit can be transferred into the university, and how much credit must be earned at your “home school.”
These determinations vary by program and institution. They are designed to ensure that your education is consistent with the learning outcomes associated with a particular program offering.
The Transfer Credit Evaluation Process
Academic credit from another institution must meet certain standards set by the university. Talk with an admissions representative or academic advisor to determine if your previously obtained knowledge might qualify as transfer credit towards your program of study.
You can also request a Preliminary Transfer Credit Review at no charge before you apply to the university. This review gives you a free “sneak peek” into the amount of your transferable credit.
After you apply, our Transfer Credit Evaluation (TCE) team conducts a review of your TCE application. This review determines if the university accepts your academic credits earned from another accredited academic institution, so you’ll understand what other classes to take to complete your degree.
Benefits of Transferring Your Credit
Transferring academic credit has several benefits. You may save on time and educational expenses. There is also the satisfaction of knowing that your degree is finally complete as you start your next career. If you have any additional questions about transfer credit, contact an admissions representative at firstname.lastname@example.org.